Amazon is always updating their colorful line of tablets, and deciding which Fire should light up your life remains just as difficult as ever. Yes, the Fire 7’s insanely low price of $49 is alluring, but is that a better value than the $89 Fire HD 8? Is the $149 Fire HD 10’s screen really worth paying three times the price of the Fire 7?
That all depends on personal preference. The new Fire HD 10 just got a refresh this year, with a reduction in overall weight and size (in addition to a brighter screen); the Fire HD 10 Plus adds some extra RAM for a performance boost.
When tablet shopping for a child, the choice is even harder, as the Fire 7 Kids Edition and Fire HD 8 Kids Edition include the same two-year, no-questions-asked warranty, along with a kid-proof case and one year of FreeTime Unlimited apps, games and other content. Keep in mind that you can also get Google Play on your Fire Tablet as well.
Amazon recently added a higher-end Kids Pro option to the mix: Fire 7 Kids Pro ($99), Fire HD 8 Kids Pro ($139), and Fire HD 10 Kids Pro ($199). All of the tablets come with a free year of Amazon Kids+, a $3 monthly service that includes access to apps, music, Audible books, games, videos and educational content. The user interface has more of a “grown-up” look than the standard Fire Kids tablets including a “For You” tab that suggests content for the kids.
Still lost? Here’s our advice on the best Fire Tablet for you.
(Image credit: Laptop Mag)1. Amazon Fire HD 10 (2020)
The longest-lasting Amazon tablet
Display: 10.1 inches (1920 x 1200 pixels) | CPU: 2 GHz Octa-core processor | RAM: 3GB | Storage: 32GB or 64GB (expandable to 1TB) | Ports: microSD, USB-C | Battery Life (Rated): Up to 12 hours | Size: 9.7 x 6.5 x 0.4 inches | Weight: 1.1 pounds
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Fantastic battery life
Bright, crisp display
Speakers have weak bass
USB-C charging — and long battery life — make the 10.1-inch Fire HD 10 the tip-top tablet in Amazon’s lineup. Yes, not only is this the only Full HD slate Amazon sells, with a 1920 x 1200-pixel panel that’s sharper than the rest, but its 224 ppi display is absolutely stunning. (In fact, the latest iteration is 10% brighter than the previous model.) The improved 2-GHz octa-core processor is zippy, and you can upgrade the internal storage from 32GB or 64GB to an impressive 1TB via microSD card. The only drawback? It’s pretty pricey: at $149, it’s three times more expensive than the Fire HD 7.
See our full Amazon Fire HD 10 (2019) review.
2. Amazon Fire 7 Tablet
Display: 7 inches (1024 x 600 pixels) | CPU: 1.3-GHz quad-core processor | RAM: 1GB | Storage: 16GB or 32GB (expandable to 512GB) | Ports: microSD, micro-USB | Battery Life (Rated): Up to 7 hours | Size: 7.6 x 4.5 x 0.4 inches | Weight: 10.1 ounces
Snappy performance despite its price
Amazon ads a-plenty (unless you pay more)
At just $49, the Fire 7 is Amazon’s most affordable tablet yet, not to mention the lowest price for just about any tablet, period. (The 8-inch Walmart Onn is a slightly pricier $64.) The Fire 7 packs a lot of value inside, with a bright screen and durable-feeling chassis. Plus, thanks to the full-fledged version of Amazon’s Alexa digital assistant, you can simply speak commands (instead of accessing Alexa with the home button of yesteryear). So, while the Fire 7 isn’t the fastest or longest-lasting Amazon slate, it’s still the cheapest.
See our full Amazon Fire 7 Tablet review.
3. Amazon Fire HD 8
A great value, dollar-for-dollar
Display: 8 inches (1280 x 800 pixels) | CPU: 1.3-GHz quad-core processor | RAM: 2GB | Storage: 32GB or 64GB (expandable to 1TB) | Ports: microSD, USB-C | Battery Life (Rated): Up to 12 hours | Size: 8 x 5.4 x 0.4 inches | Weight: 12.5 ounces
Long battery life
Alexa built in
It may cost a little more than the Fire 7, but the Fire HD 8 packs enough extras to justify that additional spend. Not only does it last longer on a charge than the Fire 7 (according to our original testing), but it’s also better for watching video, as its 8-inch, 1280 x 800-pixel display is sharper and brighter than the Fire 7’s 1024 x 600-pixel panel. Lastly, the Fire 8’s stereo speakers make it better for Amazon Prime Music, as the Fire 7 is rocking a single mono speaker. The webcam is nothing to write home about, but the Fire HD 8’s display and battery life make it the best tablet under $100.
See our full Fire HD 8 review.
4. Amazon Fire HD 8 Kids Edition
A tablet the whole family can enjoy
Display: 8 inches (1280 x 800 pixels) | CPU: 1.3-GHz quad-core processor | RAM: 1.5GB | Storage: 32GB (expandable up to 400GB) | Ports: microSD, micro-USB | Battery Life (Rated): Up to 10 hours | Size: 9.6 x 6.1 x 1 inches | Weight: 1.1 pounds
Best-in-class parental controls
Wealth of free content
Accidental damage coverage
Long battery life
Expensive for an Amazon tablet
The last thing you want when you hand your kid a tablet is for them to come back a short time later and say, “It’s dead! Charge it!” Fortunately, the Fire HD 8 For Kids lasts up to 10 hours on a charge. The included foam bumper means this slate can survive any drops and knocks your child can throw at it, and a two-year, no-questions-asked warranty means a free replacement if Junior actually breaks the device. The tablet also comes with a year of Amazon’s FreeTime Unlimited service, a digital treasure trove that features more than 15,000 age-appropriate games, movies and TV shows, including most of the popular programs from Disney, Nickelodeon and PBS. Detailed parental controls let you decide everything from what hours your child can use the device to what apps, content and websites he or she can visit. You can even set educational goals so your kid has to read for a certain amount of time in order to get playtime.
See our full Amazon Fire HD 8 Kids Edition review.
5. Amazon Fire 7 Kids Tablet
The lighter kid-friendly option
Display: 7 inches (1024 x600 pixels) | CPU: 1.3-GHz quad-core processor | RAM: 1GB | Storage: 16GB | Ports: microSD, micro-USB | Battery Life (Rated): Up to 7 hours | Size: 8.7 x 6.3 x 1 inches | Weight: 1 pound
Cheapest option for kids
Great parental controls
Shorter battery life
Amazon’s $99 tablet for kids is an amazing deal when you consider everything you get. Not only does it come in a durable foam case that makes it easier for smaller hands to grip, but the best-in-class parental controls mean that moms and dads can make sure their progenies are staying safe online. On top of all that, you get a free year of Amazon’s FreeTime Unlimited content — a buffet of kid-friendly apps, books, TV shows and movies — which normally costs $3 per month. You and your kids may be disappointed by the slate’s audio quality, as this tablet’s mono speaker is tinnier than the HD 8’s stereo sound. But parents looking for a kid-proof tablet won’t find a more affordable option out there.
Editor’s Note: The new Fire 7 Kids tablet features a new adjustable stand for hands-free viewing, double the storage and lower battery life.
See our full Amazon Fire 7 Tablet review.
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